John F. Kennedy had a great idea in 1963 to ring the bells of freedom on Independence Day. Somehow I missed this proclamation, but read about it in Dear Abby's column on June 26. We could start a tradition in our neighborhoods and communities ringing the bells at 2 p.m. on July 4th. Folks could get to know one another and talk about the freedom we enjoy and have a barbecue or potluck with friends and neighbors "to resurrect this proud tradition ... as we celebrate our freedom, let us honor the lives of those who sacrificed theirs for our precious liberty."
Fireworks are another tradition in the Tri-Cities fraught with debate. Richland allows legal use of personal fireworks. Why? I would promote flying our flags and ringing the bells to replace the personal fireworks. Some churches, ironworkers, firefighters, police and golfers are supporting this resurrected tradition.
Let's encourage the city of Richland to change its position on fireworks next year and promote flying our flag and ringing of the bells. How many more deaths and fires will it take for the Richland City Council to change the law. Council members, ask the first responders and emergency room doctors on July 5!
JIM KELLY, Richland
Digital Access for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.